Sunday, I attended the 43rd annual San Francisco PRIDE parade. It was a gorgeous day. The weather in San Francisco could not have been better. The feeling in the air was one of acceptance and equality like had never experienced before. This parade was different. It marched on the heels of the Supreme Court’s decision which brought same-sex couples the same, federal marriage rights as straight couples. The decision also led to the collapse of DOMA and Proposition 8 in California. There is still a long way for the country to go. The GLBT community won’t rest until all 50 states share marriage equality. But I know that it isn’t a matter of if, but simply a matter of when.
So many people attending the parade from every ethnic and religious backgrounds were celebrating the unquestionable right to love who you want to love. Most pride parades have a touch of rebellion tossed in the mix of celebration. This year rebellion took a back seat to a full sense of equality and validation. We, as a GLBT community, are finally and truly “the same” in the eyes of the federal government. We are equal to and not less than. A truly unbelievable concept for our souls to grasp. So many years of living as second class citizens. It’s still hard to believe that all the dreams and hopes I had as a child for myself…a the chance at a family…an opportunity for a real wedding…well, it’s all possible. Simply life changing. It doesn’t matter that I might be too old to start a family. It’s the knowledge that I can if I want to and have every aspect about that decision validated by my country and state.
I don’t care how much weight I end up losing. Nothing could have made me feel lighter than having the chains of oppression removed from my body. It’s a brand new day. It’s a brand new time. If you should see me walking around and you think I happen to have a bigger smile on my face than normal…well, I do.
- Photos: Pride Takes Over San Francisco (sfstation.com)